Already noted for his funding and support of the Randolph Macon Women's College, Mr. Jones intended to fund the creation of a public library and laid the ground work for it by 1903. However, he passed away before construction could begin. His widow, Mrs. Mary Frances Watts Jones, completed the project in his stead in 1906. Following her death, the library continues to be funded by the endowment left by her will.
With the opening of the Lynchburg Public Library in 1966, the Jones Memorial Library concentrated its collection on genealogical research and historical holdings. The collection was moved to a new building in 1987. It currently houses one of the largest genealogical collections in the state of Virginia. As of 1993, its collection was cataloged and digitized, allowing it to be viewed online. The Jones Memorial Library was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.